If current temperatures are any indication, it’s going to be one long hot summer for the country again this year. For Spectrum, the Manila Electric Co.’s (Meralco’s) renewable energy (RE) subsidiary, it is something the firm can work with.
“It’s going to be a hot summer so it’s good for the people to take advantage of solar power. If this hot temperature will persist, it will be a good year,” says Spectrum president and CEO as well as Meralco first vice president and head of customer retail services and corporate communications Victor Genuino.
At Monday’s inauguration of City of Dreams Manila’ 1.2M-megawatt (MW) solar photovoltaic (PV) system, Genuino proudly reveals the company has sealed various contracts totaling close to 20MW. “We are going to aim to double that. We will add an additional 20MW this year.”
Most of these new contracts will be coming from residential and commercial sectors, the unregulated side business of Meralco that allows Spectrum to go nationwide.
“Customers are now saying they can actually get payback from investing in solar energy,” said Genuino. “Globally, big multinationals are asking their local subsidiaries here to look for sustainable initiatives. They want to be able to compute and quantify the carbon footprint of their companies that they can reduce. With the global push for sustainability and the lower cost of ownership, more people are starting to adapt. We hope in the future this will translate also to residential solar projects,” he added.
Spectrum has designed and built solar solutions for some of the country’s largest companies such as Robinsons Land Corp., Shrinkpack Philippines Corp., and the International Rice Research Institute. It has also installed solar energy solutions for remote communities such as the ones on the islands of Isla Verde in Batangas and Cagbalete in Quezon.
In an earlier interview, Meralco President Atty. Ray C. Espinosa explained why Meralco was going into solar energy solutions, which appears counter to the power distributor’s main business. “We are joining the inexorable shift to renewable energy and adopting sustainable practices in everything we do,” he said. Also, Meralco is now putting "environmental stewardship and sustainability” top of mind as it conducts its business.
Spectrum embodies this commitment to the environment and sustainability. It aims to provide market-leading and tailor-fit renewable energy solutions to industrial, commercial, and residential clients.
As a wholly-owned subsidiary of Meralco, Spectrum draws from 116 years of knowledge and experience, synergizing with its sister companies to give the best product for its client. “We tap Meralco-trained engineers to ensure safety and reliability and we only use top global suppliers for our solar panels,” said Genuino.
Responding to the growing customer demand for renewable energy sources, Spectrum has a range of financing options to fit one’s budget.
For buildings and companies that would like solar panels installed like that of COD Manila, Genuino lists down the most basic of requirements:
1. Direct access to sunlight without obstructions such as trees and buildings;
2. Enough space on the roof to put the number of solar panels that the customer would want to install; and
3. The building is compliant to the National Structure Code of the Philippines (NSCP) 2015 or Building Code 2015.